Largest comet ever observed will soon enter solar system

 3.5 million years after its first approach, the largest comet on record is once again heading towards our solar system. The comet Bernardinelli-Bernstein should happen to ten years, says Sunday, October 3rd.

Scientists at the Dark Energy Survey are thrilled. According to a new study published on , the largest comet ever discovered is heading towards our internal solar system during a ten-year journey. Known as Bernardinelli-Bernstein (or C / 2014 UN271, in astro language), the comet is at least 100 kilometers in diameter, which is 1000 times more than a typical comet.

Yet the huge boulder poses no threat to our planet . It will be closest to Earth sometime in 2031, when the comet will dive less than 10.97 astronomical units (AU) from the Sun, placing it just outside of Saturn's orbit (a UA corresponding to 149,597,870,700 meters). Even if the cosmic object will be closer than during its last passage, it will be impossible to observe it without telescopes. After modeling the comet's trajectory, the study's authors calculated that comet Bernardinelli-Bernstein made its last approach 3.5 million years ago, and that it had then fallen within 18 AU of the Sun.

" We conclude that Bernardinelli-Bernstein is a 'new' comet in the sense that there is no evidence of a more recent approach ," the researchers explain in their study. So humans would never have seen her before. The comet was recently discovered thanks to the Dark Energy Survey (DES), a project to study the expansion of the universe , which took place between August 2013 and January 2019. Astronomers have mapped 300 million galaxies in the southern sky, uncovering more than 800 previously unknown objects. Comet Bernardinelli-Bernstein was one of these objects.

Enregistrer un commentaire

Plus récente Plus ancienne